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Uber Eats drivers now have the option to shop, check out items
With Shop and Pay, Uber is adding grocery capacity.
Uber Eats is adding shopping to its on-demand delivery services.
The news: Uber Eats released more details Friday on Shop and Pay. It’s billed as a new opportunity for drivers to earn more by going into grocery stores and other retailers to pick and check out items, in addition to completing delivery. This adds a new dimension to the service offered by Uber Eats. Additionally, it cuts out the need for additional fulfillment operations. More than 200,000 couriers are already using the service, Uber said.
How it works: The new features required Uber to add a number of features to its app.
“Rather than doing just one thing—picking up and dropping off fully prepared orders—Shop and Pay offered a new set of interactions,” wrote Therese Lim, head of product management, for grocery and new verticals at Uber. “Shopping and checking out requires more: asking questions of customers, paying for orders, and knowing what to do when the store runs out of oat milk.”
With this, Uber included capabilities for couriers on the app, including:
- Order information, including number of unique items, and whether it contains a large, heavy or fragile item.
- Barcode scanning to help couriers find items.
- Substitution recommendations for items that are out of stock.
- If an item is out, couriers can use Uber-issued digital payments or their own cards for reimbursement.
- In-app chat with customers
Key quote from Lim: “With 100,000 grocery and new vertical storefronts across the world, our ambitions are big, and we’re committed to helping consumers find more of what they’re looking for on the app. Building a strong experience for shoppers—guided by their feedback—will be critical to our success, and we’ll keep it a top priority.
What it means for delivery
Everyone is building the same business. While this service is relatively new to Uber, it’s familiar to consumers. That’s because Instacart popularized the model of working with on-demand couriers to grab items from shelves and deliver them. Uber Eats started in a different place, initially by offering meal delivery. But it has since expanded to deliver items from retailers, and offering a marketplace where users can shop items. This adds another layer to that experience.
Fulfillment savings. Anytime delivery is involved, costs become a big issue. Providing fulfillment can be resource intensive, even as it provides great service to shoppers. That's especially true in grocery, which often involves many items across a variety of categories. Employing existing drivers is one way to potentially create more efficiency. Uber didn’t release any data on this. But since the service is expanding, it’s a good bet that there are cost advantages to be had. Intriguingly, this return to the older Instacart model skips over the generation of instant delivery startups that provided fast delivery from out-of-store fulfillment sites. That model became popular in the pandemic, but has since faced challenges in realizing cost-effectiveness amid a return to more in-person shopping and a venture capital pullback when the market turned.
It’s not just the app. It’s people. Uber’s update implicitly acknowledges that consumers are not its only users. Couriers are users of Uber’s technology. Given their role in Uber’s business model, they are a constituency that must be served in and of themselves. While Uber’s model has long recognized this as it employed drivers, the additional shopping and payment work that is now being completed outside of a vehicle brings added complexity. Listening to this group and understanding their needs will be important to the success of this expansion, right alongside the effectiveness of the technology that is implemented.
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Kellogg's takes inspiration from employees, Latin in snacks rebrand
Kellanova is now the parent of Pringles, Cheez-Its and Pop Tarts.
Kellogg Company's snacks business is now Kellanova. Here are a few finer points about how the forthcoming parent of Cheez-Its and and Pop-Tarts arrived at the new name.
Last year, Kellogg announced plans to split its business into multiple companies.
Now, one company will have North American cereals like Frosted Flakes, Froot Loops and Rice Krispies under the WK Kellogg Co banner.
Another will have snacks like Pringles, North American frozen foods such as Eggo and plant-based brands like MorningStar Farms.
This week, Kellogg announced that the snacks business has a new name: Kellanova.
Here are the strategies that Kellogg employed that led to this name:
- Ask the employees: Kellogg Company asked employees for input on the name, and received 4,000 suggestions from 1,000 employees.
- Listen to the results: 20% of the employees suggested a variation of the W.K. Kellogg name, while other employees suggested that the name include "nova."
- Go to the root: "Nova" comes from the Latin word for new. CEO Steve Cahillane said it "signals our ambition to continuously evolve as an innovative, next generation, global snacking powerhouse."
As The Wall Street Journal reports, this is just the latest new company name to take a Latin root in recent years, as Kellanova joins GE Vernova, Mondelez and Altria. It's also among a number of spinouts being completed by corporations, joining GSK spinoff Haleon, J&J's Kenvue and a forthcoming company that will spin out of 3M.
Even with a name that emphasizes moving forward, Kellanova is keeping one element that is familiar: The logo still has the iconic cursive K. It will even get the boldly simple stock ticker symbol "K" to go along with it.
Even the WK Kellogg Co is combining the past and future. The company is seeking to position itself as a "117-year-old startup," even as it draws on the name and signature of the Kellogg's founder. There's even a more subtle hint about an unwritten chapter: The "Co" doesn't have a period.
To get to the future, you need to bring along a bit of the past.